China to invest US$1.5 bln in Tibet environment

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The Chinese central government will allocate a further investment of 10 billion yuan ($1.5 billion) by the end of 2015 to help protect and preserve the ecological environments in the Tibet Autonomous Region, Xinhua reported Tuesday.

The southwest plateau inland, with its nature reserve sprawling over 413,700 square kilometers, is a haven for at least 125 wild animal species and 39 wild plant species that are on the national protection list.

From 2001 to 2009, the Chinese central government has committed 8 billion yuan ($1.2 billion) to environmental preservation in Tibet, said Zhang Yongze, the region's environment bureau chief.

Since then, local governments have shut down nine cement plants, seven ironworks and four paper mills, and they've been working on promoting Tibetan herb medicine and tourism to boost its economy. So far, there is no chemical industry in the region.

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